Facial recognition tech breaches EU data rules | China stifles foreign internet to control coronavirus coverage | U.S. limits to China’s access to chip tech
The EU’s flagship data protection regime renders automatic identification through facial recognition technology illegal, Commission Vice-President for Digital Margrethe Vestager has said. Euractiv
Beijing is tightening access to the uncensored global internet, while carefully controlling its domestic news reports, to increase its grip on the media narrative around the coronavirus epidemic. The Financial Times
The Trump administration is weighing new trade restrictions on China that would limit the use of American chip-making equipment, as it seeks to cut off Chinese access to key semiconductor technology, according to people familiar with the plan. The Wall Street Journal
Huawei ban a 'thorny issue' hurting China-Australia relations, says ambassador
The Sydney Morning Herald
Danielle Cave, deputy director of the International Cyber Policy Centre at the Australian Strategic Policy Institute, denied Australia's decision was politically motivated. "It was a risk-based decision that weighed up advice from a range of government departments and agencies, including in-depth technical advice from [electronic intelligence agency] the Australian Signals Directorate," she said. She predicted there would not be a policy change to allow "high-risk vendors" into Australia's 5G networks, even if Beijing maintained pressure on the government.
Qanon Deploys 'Information Warfare' to Influence the 2020 Election
The conspiracy movement lost its online home when 8chan was shut down. Followers migrated to other sites—and have set their sights on the presidential race.
Samsung flies phone parts to Vietnam after coronavirus hits supply chain
The Financial Times
Samsung has begun flying electronic components for its latest Galaxy phones from China to its factories in Vietnam as it grapples with sweeping supply chain disruptions caused by coronavirus. “The Vietnamese government is restricting the daily transport volume from China to Vietnam through land routes, but we’re coping with it by increasing parts supplies from China via planes and shipping,” said a person familiar with the situation.
Mark Zuckerberg: Big Tech needs more regulation
The Financial Times
I don’t think private companies should make so many decisions alone when they touch on fundamental democratic values. That is why last year I called for regulation in four areas: elections, harmful content, privacy and data portability.
Toll cyber hack puts pressure on government
The Australian Financial Review
Defence Minister Linda Reynolds has insisted the government is strongly committed to strengthening cyber resiliency across Australian business, following the crippling ransomware attack on logistics giant Toll Group.
China stifles foreign internet to control coronavirus coverage
The Financial Times
Beijing is tightening access to the uncensored global internet, while carefully controlling its domestic news reports, to increase its grip on the media narrative around the coronavirus epidemic.
U.S. Weighs New Move to Limit China’s Access to Chip Technology
The Wall Street Journal
The Trump administration is weighing new trade restrictions on China that would limit the use of American chip-making equipment, as it seeks to cut off Chinese access to key semiconductor technology, according to people familiar with the plan.
William Barr thinks China is stealing American technology. Can the U.S. halt the exchange of knowledge?
The Washington Post
It’s important to distinguish among three different ways in which technological knowledge moves between the United States and China. The first mode — as Barr’s statement emphasizes — involves direct theft of U.S. technology by Chinese firms or agents. This can include industrial espionage, or duplicating and using technology without legally licensing it. This is why many U.S. firms see the defense of intellectual property rights as vital — and central to U.S. trade policy.
Trump Effort to Keep U.S. Tech Out of China Alarms American Firms
The New York Times
@AnaSwanson , David McCabe
The administration wants to protect national security by restricting the flow of technology to China. But technology companies worry it could undermine them instead.
Kirsten Gillibrand outlines new Data Protection Agency to take on Big Tech
On Thursday, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) released a proposal to overhaul the way the US government regulates privacy. Gillibrand’s Data Protection Act would found a new independent agency called the Data Protection Agency (DPA), tasked with protecting consumer data at large. Consumers would file complaints with the DPA that could trigger larger investigations into data malpractice, potentially implicating major platforms like Google and Facebook. If a company is found to have abused consumer data, the DPA could take action by inflicting civil penalties or seeking injunctive relief.
Fraud Case in Charleston, S.C., Shines Light on Web’s Dark Corners
The Wall Street Journal
A first-of-its-kind fraud prosecution of a small technology company and its owner has shed light on how the architecture of the internet allows spammers, hackers and other bad actors to flourish online while cloaking their true identities.
Meet the Man Who Tweeted “It’s Lis,” Who Is Not Lis Smith
Slate got in touch with Chinedu, the man behind the (now-deleted) account in question, @easychinedu. After video chatting with Chinedu (who asked us not to use his last name so that he might attempt to salvage some degree of privacy) and asking him some questions about his big day online, Slate feels comfortable saying definitively that, unless Pete’s campaign possesses some incredible CGI technology, this man is not Lis Smith.
The doctors and lawyers giving advice on TikTok
The BBC meets a fertility doctor, a psychiatrist and an immigration lawyer in the US who are all using the app to help combat misinformation in their fields.
Inside X, Google's top-secret moonshot factory
Even standing inside X – a cavernous former mall in Mountain View, California – it’s hard to articulate exactly what X is. Within Alphabet, Google’s parent company, it is grouped alongside Deepmind in "Other Bets", although in that metaphor, X is more like the gambler. Its stated aim is to pursue what it calls “moonshots” – to try to solve humanity’s great problems by inventing radical new technologies.
400 Million Social Media Users Are Set to Lose Their Anonymity in India
Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and TikTok will have to reveal users’ identities if Indian government agencies ask them to, according to the country’s controversial new rules for social media companies and messaging apps expected to be published later this month.
Redcar cyber-attack: Council using pen and paper
More than 135,000 UK residents have been without online public services for nearly a week, as their council struggles with a cyber-attack. Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council's website and all computers at the authority were attacked on Saturday. One cyber-security expert told the BBC the incident had all the hallmarks of a ransomware attack, in which files are scrambled until a ransom is paid.
Vestager: Facial recognition tech breaches EU data protection rules
The EU’s flagship data protection regime renders automatic identification through facial recognition technology illegal, Commission Vice-President for Digital Margrethe Vestager has said.
Silicon Valley Heads to Europe, Nervous About New Rules
The New York Times
Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg and Google’s Sundar Pichai have journeyed to Brussels as the European Union drafts regulation for A.I. and the digital economy.
“V” For “Vympel”: FSB’s Secretive Department “V” Behind Assassination Of Georgian Asylum Seeker In Germany
Phone metadata obtained by Bellingcat shows that the plotting for the murder of Khangoshvili — and the selection of Vadim Krasikov as the assassin — was in the works no later than March 2019. Billing records show that starting in early 2019 and ending just before his trip to Berlin, Krasikov was in frequent communication with as many as eight members of the Vympel Association of Former FSB Spetsnaz Officers, three of whom are in senior positions within the organization. (What is Vympel? Read below). One of the people Krasikov frequently communicated with before his Berlin mission was Eduard Bendersky, chairman of both this veterans association and the Vympel Charitable Fund.
Honey Trap Malware—Here Are The Hamas Dating Apps That Hacked Israeli Soldiers
Several hundred Israeli soldiers have had their mobile phones infected with malware sent by Hamas cyber militants. The “honey trap” operation used fake profiles of attractive women to entice soldiers into chatting over messaging platforms and ultimately downloading malicious malware. As detailed below, that malware was designed to return critical device info and also access key device functions, including the camera, microphone, contact information and messages.
Iranian hackers have been hacking VPN servers to plant backdoors in companies around the world
Iranian hackers have targeted Pulse Secure, Fortinet, Palo Alto Networks, and Citrix VPNs to hack into large companies.
City estates where hackers plot multi-billion bank heists
During last year’s Easter holidays, several banks in Kenya switched off their local area networks (LAN) in a curious and coordinated move. While customers could continue transacting through their mobile money accounts and Internet banking platforms, employees could not get on their work emails or access internal servers. The next day, news broke out that criminals had made away with Sh11 million from Automated Teller Machines (ATM) belonging to Absa Bank Kenya (formerly Barclays Bank of Kenya) in a cyber-attack known as ATM jackpotting.
TikTok Is Filled With Pro-Eating Disorder Content, Despite Its Own Rules
TikTok's "For You" page serves up clips from literally anybody — and users say they are being exposed to videos that glorify eating disorders.
Charting a Way Forward on Online Content Regulation
Over the past decade the internet has improved economies, reunited families, raised money for charity and helped bring about political change. However, the internet has also made it easier to share harmful content like hate speech and terrorist propaganda.
Unprecedented Facebook URLs Dataset now Available for Academic Research through Social Science One
Social Science One
We are excited to announce that Social Science One and Facebook have completed, and are now making available to academic researchers, one of the largest social science datasets ever constructed. We processed approximately an exabyte (a quintillion bytes, or a billion gigabytes) of raw data from the platform. The dataset itself contains a total of more than 10 trillion numbers that summarize information about 38 million URLs shared more than 100 times publicly on Facebook (between 1/1/2017 and 7/31/2019).